FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Alabama Mountain Lakes Tourist Association
PHONE: 256.350.3500 / 800.648.5381
AMLA Announces 2019 PEAK Award Winners
Decatur, Ala. - The Alabama Mountain Lakes Tourist Association (AMLA) announces the recipients of the 2019 PEAK Awards. The program pays tribute to tourism leaders, attractions, festivals and organizations that set the bar for North Alabama’s $3 billion tourism industry. The awards presentation is part of the AMLA Annual Meeting held today at Cook Museum of Natural Science in Decatur, Ala.
Representing the highest achievement in North Alabama tourism, the PEAK Awards honor individuals, events and organizations that have had a major impact on tourism in North Alabama. “The PEAK Awards showcase the best of the best in the North Alabama tourism industry,” said Alabama Mountain Lakes Tourist Association President/CEO Tami Reist. “These talented industry professionals know how to tell our story, and these awards give us a chance to celebrate their work and the impact it has on the North Alabama region. And by impact, I mean exponential growth in job numbers, economic development and revenue for local cities and counties.”
Fourteen awards were handed out at the awards presentation, held during the annual meeting. This year’s award winners are:
Organization of the Year
The Organization of the Year award is presented to the AMLA member organization that has contributed significantly to the betterment and development of tourism in North Alabama in the past year.
Winner: Joe Wheeler State Park
Event of the Year
The Event of the Year award is presented to the AMLA member special event or festival that has made a great contribution to tourism in the past year.
Winner: Santa’s Underground Workshop at Rickwood Caverns State Park
Attraction of the Year
The Attraction of the Year award is presented to the AMLA member attraction that has made a great contribution to tourism in the past year.
Winner: Jules J. Berta Winery and Vineyard
Good Neighbor Award
The “Good Neighbor” Friend of Tourism Award is presented to a person or organization whose body of work has had a significant impact on tourism in the past year.
Winner: Patti Culp, executive director, Alabama Travel Council
Northern Star Award
The Northern Star Award is presented to an individual, such as a ranger, guide and a front line employee, who has gone “above and beyond” expectations.
Winner: Faye Smith, sales manager, Hampton Inn (Guntersville)
Young Professional of the Year Award
The Young Professional of the Year “Green Apple Award” is awarded to a person who has been in the tourism business less than seven years and has exhibited extraordinary leadership skills and initiative associated with their position.
Winner: Randa Hovater, media relations manager, Florence/Lauderdale Tourism
Tourism Professional of the Year
The Tourism Professional of the Year award is presented to an individual or employee of an AMLA member organization who has made a great contribution to tourism in the past year.
Winner: Mayor Brandy Pierce (Leesburg)
Lasting Impression Award
The Lasting Impression Award is presented to an attraction, event, person or organization that has provided a “lasting impression” on tourists thereby improving the overall image of tourism in North Alabama.
Winner: David Johnson, DJ Productions
The Chairman’s Cup Award is given annually to a travel writer or media person who has over time demonstrated support of AMLA, the region and its tourism activities.
Winner: Jennifer Breuer, Rocketcitymom.com
The President’s Award is presented to any person or organization whose tourism-related project created awareness or presented a positive image for North Alabama in the past year.
Winner: Jay Lamar, executive director of the Alabama Bicentennial Commission
The Legacy Award recognizes an individual who has shown a long lasting and permanent contribution to the tourism and travel industry over the years and has helped change the tourism landscape of North Alabama.
Winner: Tim Haney, north region operations and maintenance supervisor for the Alabama State Parks Division of the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.
It Only Takes A Spark Award
It Only Takes A Spark Award recognizes an individual or organization who is igniting change and making a positive impact on the tourism industry in North Alabama through their initiative, creativity and spirit.
Winner: Haley Schrieber, Alabama Music Hall of Fame
Top Performing Ambassador
The award recognizes the work and achievements of the top performing North Alabama Ambassador for 2019.
Winner: Amanda Bridges-Dunn, Birmingham, Ala. (Instagram @adventuringlight / Twitter @adventuringlt)
The Influencer Award goes to an individual or organization whose innovative ideas and concepts in social media have made a significant impact on the tourism industry in North Alabama.
Winner: Melea Hames, Alabama Mountain Lakes Tourist Association
Images of award recipients are available upon request by calling AMLA at 800.648.5381 or by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.